Agriculture in Southeast Asia is predominantly small-scale yet is a major source of livelihood. According to the AIDF infographic, agriculture accounts for 80% of jobs in Laos, in Bangladesh and Vietnam the figure is approximately 47%.
Between 25% and 35% of Myanmar’s GDP is provided by agriculture, which also accounts for 65% of Myanmar’s employment. However, the sector is yet to become a significant contributor to export-led growth due to farmers’ limited access to finance and inadequate financial services. This is the key constraint to increasing investment in the sector according to the OECD.
Progress towards international targets on hunger depends on significant improvement made in Cambodia, Indonesia, The Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar and the Philippines.
Despite achieving the Millennium Development Goal of halving hunger by 2015, more than a quarter of Myanmar’s population is still malnourished and lives in poverty. Stunting caused by chronic malnutrition affects more than 35% of children in Myanmar. Malnutrition rates continue to be among the highest in the region. Undernourishment affects 9% and 14% Vietnam and Myanmar’s populations respectively.
Natural disasters and inter-communal violence significantly affect food security in Myanmar and occasionally limit access to those affected. The World Food Programme provides food assistance to 77,000 malnourished children and 128,000 vulnerable people displaced across the country.
Interventions to address malnutrition need to focus on improving maternal and child health and strengthening health service access and delivery. A multi-sectoral approach is required in order to improve water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) practices and access to healthcare, whilst promoting livelihoods to help to reduce poverty. Vietnam leads the way amongst South East Asia counties where 97% of people have improved drinking water source, closely followed by Bangladesh (87%).
Hear updates on initiatives and programmes aimed at improving rural livelihoods and food security in South East Asia directly from Masakazu Ichimura, Head, Centre for Alleviation of Poverty through Sustainable Agriculture (CAPSA), United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UN-ESCAP), Joseph Win Hlaing, Director, Community Agency for Rural Development and Kelsey Crowley, Country Representative, Myanmar, Agency for Technical Cooperation and Development (ACTED), who will gather at the 3rd annual Aid & Development Asia Summit in Maynmar on 14-15 June 2017. Dr Tin Htut, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, and Irrigation, Myanmar, will give an opening keynote address at the Summit.
Attend the summit to learn more about latest innovations, policies, and initiatives aimed at supporting community resilience and food security. Amongst other speakers joining the discussion are Khin Zarli Aye, Country Director, FHI 360, Marcel de Brune, Project Director, International Rescue Committee and Brushan Shrestha, Monitoring and Evaluation Manager, Building Resilience and Adaptation to Climate Extremes and Disasters (BRACED) Programme, Plan International and George Dura, Deputy Head of Cooperation, European Union Delegation to Myanmar. To register your participation, click here
Aye Kyawt Swe, Agriculture Technical Advisor, Mercy Corps and Dr Dindo Campilan, Director for Asia, International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) will address agricultural productivity and transformation. To view detailed agenda, please visit http://asia.aidforum.org/agenda